EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH MAY LINDSTROM, BEAUTY ALCHEMIST
by Alyaka.com Editor on Oct 18, 2022
It is a great pleasure to be granted an exclusive interview with a renowned beauty alchemist, who devoted her time, effort and dedication in developing a luxurious skin care line adored by many.
May Lindstrom is a model, make up artist, and skin guru who takes an eco-friendly approach in formulating beauty and skin care solutions.
May is a beauty alchemist who is hands on in creating a beauty experience that brings a state of relaxation and calm, while offering an opulent experience that is derived from nature.
Known as the skin chef, she started formulating her skin care products in her very own kitchen. She is the genius behind iconic and niche beauty products made from botanical extracts that in no time became the top picks of well-known makeup artists and beauty enthusiasts.
Allow us to get a peek of what’s in the mind of a skin guru who has made a mark in the organic skincare industry.
YOU’VE BEEN ACTIVE IN THE BEAUTY INDUSTRY FOR A LONG TIME. WHAT DROVE YOU TO EXCEL IN THIS INDUSTRY? WHAT / WHO ARE YOUR INSPIRATIONS AS A BEAUTY ALCHEMIST?
My journey into skincare began as a small girl. Growing up, I would spend full days mashing wild plants into a pulp and covering myself, and everyone who would humor me in “potions” made from these vibrant green liquids and the clays I would dig from the iron rich soil in my yard. I am passionate about pure, potent ingredients and about a return to our roots.
Our planet provides such an elegant bounty of delicious botanicals, clays, salts and spices that it is hard for me to fathom how we have strayed so far from that to the current trend of hocus-pocus performed in laboratories, mass produced plastic bottles filled with damaging synthetic chemicals and cheap fillers.
I believe in simplicity. While I have given an incredible amount of attention to designing products that create a feeling of decadence and celebration, my very core is as basic and grounded as it gets. Beauty truly does come from within and I know that without a healthy body and spirit, our skin suffers.
This line was born out of a desire to create blissful bookends in my day, a time-out morning and night that was just for me. Having formulated for years out of necessity (I am blessed with highly sensitive and chemically reactive skin), I yearned to create something that was simply luxurious and lovely. My foundation in purity and simplicity is solid, but it was time for me to embrace playfulness and beauty in my potions. I wanted to feel something when I picked up a bottle and entered my cleansing ritual. I wanted to feel peace, joy, and celebration all in that one moment. And I wanted to share that with every woman I loved and cared about so she could feel this, too.
My inspiration comes from the delight in the discovery of new scents, colors, textures and the beautifying magic of plants and minerals straight from nature. Working intimately with these pure ingredients is heaven for me and infinitely inspiring. I love to breathe in something new, cup a drop of a flower essence in my palms, inhale and see where my imagination takes me. I like to envision who will fall in love with this new treat – who this man or woman is who will resonate with these elements once I’ve crafted it into a new blend.
AS A MOTHER, HOW DID YOU MANAGE TO MAINTAIN YOUR FLAWLESS BEAUTY? WHAT ARE THE BEAUTY SECRETS THAT YOU CAN SHARE WITH WOMEN AND MOTHERS OUT THERE?
We cannot underestimate the importance of treating ourselves well from the inside out. If you are stressed out and exhausted, have hormonal imbalances and poor eating habits, lead an unsettled and unhappy life… you simply will not shine. Do whatever you can to find your rhythm and establish balance in your world. Eat the rainbow. Nutrition is absolutely key. Your inner health is reflected in your outer beauty. You will not only look lovely, but you will feel amazing. Flood your plate with fresh greens, bold reds and oranges (beet, sweet potato), blues and violets (berries, red cabbage) and a rotating variety of whole grains and legumes. Hydrate. Chew. Rest.
BASED ON YOUR EXPERIENCE AS A MODEL, ARE THERE CERTAIN DOWNSIDES TO THIS TYPE OF PROFESSION THAT SETS BACK AN IDEAL BEAUTY ROUTINE?
LIKEWISE, CAN YOU SHARE SOME BEAUTY HACKS THAT MAKE MODELS LOOK SO GOOD AND PHOTO-PERFECT AT ALL TIMES? I’M SURE THAT A LOT OF OUR READERS WILL BE INTERESTED TO KNOW YOUR BEAUTY SECRET. 🙂
During my modeling career, I learned through my years in the makeup chair that my own skin is not something I can compromise. I have the kind of complexion that is so sensitive and reactive, that one application of the wrong product will leave me covered in blisters and rashes, or a terrible breakout. My skin physically hurts when I do not treat it well, not to mention the self-consciousness that comes when you know you are not looking your best. Not having a voice to say No to the products used on me as a model was one of the big reasons I happily closed that career door. At the end of the day, my health is too important and I have to be my first priority.
As for beauty hacks – The Blue Cocoon is a lifesaver. It removes redness and inflammation, banishes flaky skin on contact and adds glow like no other. I love it as a highlight when I’m going to be in photos – it’s gorgeous, and photographs incredibly naturally, lending the look of perfect skin. It also helps foundation to go on smoother and more cleanly. Bonus – it’s equally great for lips.
IF THERE ARE CERTAIN “BEAUTY FOODS” THAT YOU BELIEVE IN, WHAT ARE THEY? LIKEWISE, ARE THERE FOODS THAT YOU CONSIDER AS “SINFUL” WHEN IT COMES TO SKINCARE?
I focus on vibrant, whole foods, but I also believe in a little indulgence. There’s little that is entirely off limits one hundred percent of the time. There’s a saying: “Everything in moderation, including moderation.” 🙂 For me, diet is absolutely key to beauty and well-being. I eat very well and am a lover of good food. I subscribe to two different CSAs and love having these mystery boxes of super fresh fruits and vegetables show up on my doorstep. Living in California, I am very blessed with incredible access to the best farm-fresh goodies year round. It inspires me to cook gorgeous food that feeds both my soul and my family’s bellies. I believe in eating the rainbow, choosing the most vibrantly colored produce you can find and mixing up your meals regularly for nutritional variety. I incorporate tons of whole unprocessed grains and every type of legume I can get my hands on. Also – FAT. The power of good fats is vital to our well being, and I utilize them abundantly – avocado, olive, coconut, seeds and nuts and a variety of pure plant oils… these contain such powerful, nourishing energy. They also contribute greatly to gorgeous, plump skin.
When it comes to skin health, inflammatory foods (dairy, sugar, eggs, wheat/gluten, alcohol) play a big role in our physical appearance. Sugar in particular can wreak total havoc on delicate complexions and so it’s the first thing I cut when I notice my glow fading. Always make vegetables your primary food, and best friend. You really cannot overdo your intake of fresh greens. Our greatest beauty comes from the inside, so it’s important to touch on this.
MANY PEOPLE ARE ALREADY INCLUDING NATURAL SKINCARE PRODUCTS INTO THEIR BEAUTY ROUTINE. WHAT IS IT ABOUT YOUR PRODUCT LINE, THAT MAKES IT STANDOUT FROM WHAT IS AVAILABLE IN THE MARKET TODAY?
May Lindstrom Skin shatters the boundary that previously stood between healthy and luxurious. I innovate and create gorgeously effective potions designed to reveal and illuminate the sensuous nature of healthy, glowing skin while celebrating a return to the vital and conscious daily ritual. These are my delectable treats, made for me, by me and shared with you. Each and every bottle is filled by hand, each package sealed with personal care and attention. Our treats are gorgeous, from the bottle to the box and attention is paid to every detail. Customer experience is our focus – this isn’t about cleaning up dirt or softening rough spots. This is the story we tell ourselves about ourselves. This is a celebration of our individual beauty.
YOU’VE BEEN FEATURED IN FASHION AND BEAUTY MAGAZINES AND IT LOOKS LIKE YOU HAVE INHERITED YOUR MOTHER’S GOOD GENES. 🙂
BEFORE YOU DEVELOPED YOUR OWN BEAUTY LINE, DID YOU FOLLOW A CERTAIN BEAUTY REGIMEN? WERE THERE BEAUTY PRODUCTS THAT YOU CONSIDERED BEFORE AS ESSENTIALS?
My skin was a battleground from birth. Keeping my complexion clear and healthy has always been a struggle. I have the kind of skin that breaks out in rashes and hives, that blisters on contact with certain synthetic ingredients, particularly preservatives and perfumes, and shows me very clearly when any part of my world or environment is out of balance. Stress and diet are major factors for me and it has created a catalyst for how I consciously build every day of my life.
I learned over time that using even the simplest of common products (even basic soap or lotion) just wasn’t an option for my body. In order to not have constant pain in my skin, I had to learn an entirely new language of care. Ultimately, this is what led to my becoming a formulator.
I believe our skin has the ability to heal itself if we let it. It is our responsibility to provide abundant nutrition and hydration and to be gentle in our care. By limiting our exposure to harsh chemicals and extreme treatments, we open up to gentler methods. I build each of my products on the same philosophy and ingredients that have been treasured and shared by women all over the world since the beginning of time. I trust in earth’s bounty and the wisdom of those who came before me.
Simple things I still use to this day – raw coconut oil for head to toe hydration, good salts for the bath, chlorella powder for a quick and nutrient rich masque treatment. A hot bath, salty as the sea, and pure raw honey blended with a bit of cinnamon, slathered thick from forehead to breasts… simple, and life-changing.
WE KNOW THAT YOU ARE VERY MUCH HANDS ON IN CREATING YOUR BEAUTY PRODUCTS. CAN YOU GIVE US A BRIEF OVERVIEW OF YOUR PROCESSES AND HOW YOU ARE ABLE TO STICK TO YOUR STANDARDS?
Our studio is essentially a small bakery, emanating the most incredible hunger-inducing aromas from all the cocoa, spices, beautiful plant oils and raw honey. It’s my favorite place to be.
Everything we do is in-house. Each fresh ingredient is shipped directly to our studio in its whole and raw state, where we blend each micro batch by hand, and individually hand fill each and every bottle and jar. Until just a couple years ago, this was entirely me. Now, I am very grateful to not be the only set of hands!
Once each bottle is filled and shined, we lovingly pack each box as though it’s Christmas. We ship most days of the week and nothing stays on our shelves – these treats are in constant movement to ensure ultimate freshness and efficacy for our clients. We are a small team, and a real family, and truly pour our hearts into delivering a beautiful experience.
For me, formulation is as intuitive as making soup. I’m not one to follow a recipe in either cooking or formulating. I like to just play and explore until something resonates with me, until I reach a scent, texture, and effect that I know is special and exciting. My work is a combination of intuition and an ongoing study of plants, minerals and our relationship to beauty rituals throughout history.
AMONG YOUR SELECTION OF BEAUTY PRODUCTS, WHAT IS IT THAT YOU ARE MOST PROUD OF AND WHY?
The Blue Cocoon. This is essentially the most beautiful facial oil you’ve ever experienced in a unique waterless and waxless balm form. In the jar, it is a solid. Once it touches skin, it turns immediately to a lovely fluid. This is used both as a daily hydrator or as a special treatment for skin that is sensitive, inflamed, damaged, acneic or irritated. It can be used as a spot treatment or for the full face, neck and décolleté. It is a powerful anti-inflammatory and soothes skin in the most beautiful way, providing the perfect level of hydration and healing, eliminating redness and irritation. It works wonderfully for all skin types, and is especially effective for those prone to eczema, psoriasis, dermatitis and rosacea. The Blue Cocoon contains the superhero ingredient blue tansy, which calms and relieves inflammation on a magical level. It’s like a meditation and spa vacation for your skin.
THE COMPETITION AMONG NICHE BEAUTY PRODUCTS IS STIFF AND YET, MANY PEOPLE PREFER MAY LINDSTROM. WHAT DO YOU THINK ARE THE CHARACTERISTICS THAT MAKE YOUR PRODUCTS STAND OUT?
I quite honestly do not feel the competition. I am continually inspired by other formulators, brand creators, beautiful lines from my peers. I think we all bring something different to the table and I’m truly delighted that we finally have the gorgeous selection of clean and effective skincare and cosmetics that we do. This is a massive shift from ten or even five years ago. If anything, the challenge is to move outside the box of for the small green beauty world. I want to shatter the boundary that has historically stood between healthy and luxurious and innovate skin treats that every woman has on her wish list – not just those women already immersed in the world of natural beauty.
I’M SURE THAT MANY OF YOUR FOLLOWERS WOULD BE INTERESTED TO KNOW YOUR BEAUTY ROUTINE. IF YOU ARE TO CREATE AN IDEAL BEAUTY BOX, WHAT WOULD IT CONTAIN?
I begin my mornings in the shower, brightening my skin with gentle (and powerfully effective) exfoliation with The Clean Dirt. The spicy and exotic aroma wakes up my senses and gives the most incredible start to my day – leaving my spirits lifted and my skin fresh and glowing. I follow with The Youth Dew, layered with The Blue Cocoon, for incomparable glow and health. The Youth Dew provides graceful aging protection, a host of antioxidant superpowers and balancing moisture. The Blue Cocoon is simply heaven on earth, and my greatest skin savior – it eliminates all redness and sensitivity, heals and deeply hydrates and calms both skin and spirit effortlessly. It’s also my favorite treatment for eyes and lips of all time.
Before I exit the shower, I massage The Good Stuff over every inch of my skin, all the way to my toes, and even a few drops through my hair. It’s the sexiest thing you’ve ever found in a bottle. I call this my “fabric-free lingerie”. 🙂 After exiting the shower, I mist my face, neck and décolleté generously with The Jasmine Garden, and then go about my day.
In the evenings, I love to wind down with a bath. It feels wonderful to wear The Honey Mud as a masque (it doubles as a silky cleanser) into the water, allowing the heat and steam to further activate the raw honey enzymes and infuse moisture into my skin. This is a wonderful treat to rotate with the powerfully effective and warming superhero – The Problem Solver. I try to make time for a full treatment with The Problem Solver once or twice a week. After every cleansing or treatment, it’s vital to feed goodness back into your skin with The Youth Dew or The Blue Cocoon. I treat myself to both every day, twice a day, always.
The most important tip – simply make time. This is for YOU, and there is no one more important than that. This moment is yours. Claim it. Cherish it. And watch yourself transform.